In the preseason, the New York Jets were a running joke. They didn’t score their first touchdown until the final game of the preseason. The New York media even labeled them “clowns”. But then they went out and scored 48 points in their season opener against the Buffalo Bills.
So which Jets team will we see ride into Heinz Field to face the Steelers this weekend?
The Jets obviously don’t have a particularly high-powered offense (despite what they did last weekend). They had so little confidence in their quarterback, Mark Sanchez, that they brought in Tim Tebow to provide competition for him at the position.
But to be fair to Sanchez, the Jets haven’t quite surrounded him with a roster full of offensive weapons. Do the names Shonn Greene, Stephen Hill or Jeff Cumberland strike fear into anyone? Aside from former Steelers wide receiver Santonio Holmes, those three are the Jets’ other primary offensive weapons. And even Santonio Holmes hasn’t lit the world on fire since he’s been with the Jets. Holmes only had 654 receiving yards last year, which ranked 62nd among NFL recievers. He hasn’t even matched the production that Jericho Cotchery gave the Jets when he was playing for them.
That should be a welcome relief to a Steelers’ defense that got lit up last week by Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.
But the real story of the game may be injuries. The Steelers will be missing James Harrison……again. Troy Polamalu is also suffering from a calf injury and may not play. Rashard Mendenhall is getting better, but he’s still not ready to play this week. Isaac Redman still isn’t at 100% either. And let’s not even talk about the offensive line. It seems like they’re just one big injury report.
Of course the Jets have their own injuries to worry about. Their star cornerback, Darrelle Revis, won’t be playing on Sunday due to a concussion. The match-up of the Jets’ cornerbacks, Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie, against the Steelers wide receiver tandem of Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown was shaping up as a classic match-up. But without Revis, the Jets will have to call upon former 1st round pick Kyle Wilson. He’s a decent player, but he’s no Darrelle Revis.
As much as I’d like to hype up this game, I’m finding it hard to do so. I think that the Jets are going to be outclassed on both sides of the ball, regardless of the Steelers’ injuries.
I’m predicting that the Steelers will get their first win of the season and improve their record to 1-1.
More importantly, I predict that this is what the Jets players are going to look like at the end of the game.